'Serre Chevalier', home of Luc Alphand, the downhill world champion from 1995 to 1997, is found near the Italian border. Offering indirect links to Montgenèvre and the Milky Way, it has its own 250km of pistes and another 900km available with the Grande Galaxie Pass. The resort itself is very much an intermediates' paradise, good for beginners, and there is still plenty to keep the more advanced skiers happy. More accomplished skiers are best advised to head for Monetier for some good black pistes, or a considerable variety of off-piste terrain. Two-thirds of the mountain enjoys wooded surroundings and, as the slopes are north-facing, they do hold snow. Boarders will find masses to do, particularly those more advanced, with a specialist park and good off-piste.
The overall impression of Serre Chevalier is one of traditional, almost 'provencal' charm, particularly in Monetier. It is an atmospheric venue, of good value and unpretentious, also with a strong French feel. The restaurants serve good local fare, a car is a good option, allowing you to try each village's eateries but there is also a bus linking up the resorts. Briancon is a great destination if you are looking for off-snow activities. Families may be particularly attracted, with a very good ski school and decent childcare provision. Turin and its airport are two and a half hours away